Almost 20 years ago, a Richmond, Va. band called Burn the Priest transformed into Lamb of God, becoming one of their generation’s definitive metal acts. Now, Lamb of God will turn back into Burn the Priest for a special covers album, Legion: XX, filled with tracks that influenced the musicians growing up.

Burn the Priest moved away from the metal world for Legion: XX, instead tackling punk, hardcore, crossover and sludge tracks from bands like Bad Brains, Agnostic Front, Cro-Mags, S.O.D., Melvins and more.

“Our inauspicious beginnings somehow grew into something none of us had ever even imagined possible, let alone aspired to, however, this is the story of Burn the Priest,” says guitarist Mark Morton. “The songs we chose to cover on this album reflect that story. They are touchstones from that point in time. The inspiration we gleaned from these bands and these songs carries through our work and our creative pursuits, even to this day. Many thanks to these bands for lighting our fire and endless gratitude to our fans around the world for keeping it lit.”

To kick off Legion: XX, Burn the Priest have released a cover of “Inherit the Earth” by the Accused. “‘Inherit The Earth’ hit me in the face soon after I managed to get my grubby mitts on the album sometime around ‘88. I got the Accused record at a ‘Yellow Banana’ record store on Route 1 south of DC while in route back from my ‘counselor’ to my home in Woodbridge, Virginia,” recalls drummer Chris Adler. “I got home and grabbed my board and I rocked it on my Discman. At about 2:12 into the tune the clouds parted above me and on a loudspeaker God bellowed down to me, ‘YOUR PURPOSE.’ That was the moment I knew that if I tried hard enough I could convey myself and how I felt - with music. It will never be ‘ours,’ and we know that about all the tunes we’ve covered, but hopefully one of them hit you in the face as I had been, and God will part the clouds for you, too.”

Vocalist Randy Blythe recently stopped by our studio to discuss Legion: XX and how Burn the Priest chose which tracks to transform. With the Bad Brains being Blythe’s favorite band, having done guest vocals for them a number of times, Randy decided to churn out a version of “I Against I.” “H.R. is not of this planet, vocally,” Blythe raves. “When I heard the first Bad Brains record, I was like, ‘It sounds like a space alien or something.’ When I do Bad Brains with Burn the Priest, I did some of the H.R. style stuff more melodic to show respect to him and to show you I can do that.”

A more bizarre pick for Legion: XX is Ministry’s “Jesus Built My Hotrod,” which Blythe admits he wasn’t into at first. “I honestly thought, ‘This is a stupid idea,’ when I came in. And then I sang it and it was so much fun.”

Burn the Priest’s Legion: XX is set to come out May 18 via Epic Records. To grab your pre-orders and merch bundles, click here. On the street date, a 7” vinyl version of “Inherit the Earth” and a B-side of Helmet’s “In the Meantime” will also be released. Check out our interview with Randy Blythe above and the full Legion: XX track listing below.

Epic

Burn the Priest, 'Inherit the Earth' (The Accused)

Legion: XX track listing:

1. Inherit The Earth (originally performed by The Accused)
2. Honey Bucket (originally performed by Melvins)
3. Kerosene (originally performed by Big Black)
4. Kill Yourself (originally performed by S.O.D.)
5. I Against I (originally performed by Bad Brains)
6. Axis Rot (originally performed by Sliang Laos)
7. Jesus Built My Hotrod (originally performed by Ministry)
8. One Voice (originally performed by Agnostic Front)
9. Dine Alone (originally performed by Quicksand)
10. We Gotta Know (originally performed by Cro-Mags)

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